Setting the Scene: Financial Spaces and Architectures

  • Miriam Meissner
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Globalization, Culture and Society book series (PSGCS)


This chapter explores imaginaries of urban architecture and public space in Global Financial Crisis (GFC) narratives. It situates these motifs within a tradition of capitalism critique that revolves around cities and the ways in which urban design developed from the modern toward the postmodern. GFC depictions both perpetuate, and play, on this tradition. They narrate and aestheticize modern city geometries, skyscraper shapes, urban panorama shots, corporate glass façades and motifs of “present absence” in urban public space. In so doing, they project conflicting ideas and perceptions of finance (such as the idea of market efficiency vs. the idea of financial excess) onto single “mythical” imaginaries.


Urban aesthetics Urban architecture Modernism Postmodernism Critical urban theory Skyscrapers Skylines Grid city Corporate glass façades Visual perspectives on the city 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Miriam Meissner
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of SociologyLancaster UniversityLancasterUnited Kingdom

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